Timbuktu mayor Hallé Ousman confirmed the news during an exclusive telephone interview with Magharebia. "There are actually many Pakistani nationals in Timbuktu
, as well as others from many other nationalities, the mayor said. "I personally saw them today going around streets, neighbourhoods and markets. However, they haven't yet started actual communication and direct conversation with residents."
"As to their mission, it became clear to residents several weeks ago," Ousman added. "It is represented in training the new recruits who al-Qaeda and other armed groups in town are enlisting